A Need For Humility
Someone once sent me this quote from Russian novelist, Leo Tolstoy: “Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”
Let’s be honest. Given the choice to examine my own life and my own faults versus focusing on the obvious problems of others, I’m much more likely to choose to focus on others. It’s easier–and far less uncomfortable!–to see the things that need to be changed, fixed, or adjusted in others.
This tendency of ours isn’t new. Jesus addressed it during His years in ministry.
“Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:3-5 (ESV)
We all have logs in our eyes. We all have something with which we struggle. But my dilemma is that I grow comfortable with the log in my eye. I leave it there and don’t take care of it. Attending to the hard—and painful—work of changing myself requires the desire to actually do it, but that’s not all. It also requires the ability to change, and frankly, in some areas of my life, I lack that ability on my own. Paul the apostle recognized this in his own life: “For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.” – Romans 7:18
So, if I have the desire to change and am willing to acknowledge I lack the ability to do it, perhaps I’m ready to open myself to the One who can change me.
“Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!” – Romans 7:24-25
The world cannot be a better place until I become a better person!
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